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Meat processing and packaging company Hilton Foods has appointed Mainbrace Constructions for part of its infrastructure development at Truganina, Melbourne.

Hilton Foods is co-located with Woolworths at the site, where the supermarket giant is building its automated Melbourne Fresh Distribution Centre (MFDC). Hilton Foods is Woolworths’ meat supplier.

An air-bridge will connect the two facilities, and Mainbrace will develop the connection on Hilton Foods’ side, coordinating an internal link between the bridge and the existing dispatch area. The contract is worth around $2 million.

Mainbrace is currently working in a health safety, environment and quality role for internal works, which are being carried out by Vanlerlande.

Vanderlande has installed and is servicing and maintaining the robotics and automation equipment at the facility, and will also provide new automation and an updated platform in the load-out area.

The project has been collaborative and multi-layered, Mainbrace VIC Interiors manager Craig Dunlop said.

It started with an early contractor involvement role with Woolworths, covering the design, cost planning, construction methodology and programming aspects of the build.

“Early Contractor Involvement is a service which enables us to work with clients at the conceptual phase of a project, in order to value engineer an optimal solution that we know, based on our experience, will be efficiently deliverable once the project moves to the construction phase,” Dunlop said.

He said the works draw on Mainbrace’s extensive experience in completing complex projects in a live environment, enabling clients to maintain their operations. The company has worked with Woolworths on new stores, refurbishments and upgrades in the past.

“As retail evolves, we are supporting our clients at different stages in the retail supply chain to help them achieve new efficiencies in their operations. This project with Woolworths, Hilton Foods and Vanderlande is a prime example.

“We have coordinated a detailed construction program in the context of a live food production and dispatch environment, in collaboration with the logistics team to sequence work to suit inbound and outbound times.”

The collaborative program of works is scheduled for completion in 2021.

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